Questions about Podiatry Profession, 2020-2021 application, and what are my chances?

Autohasa

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Oct 23, 2016
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Hello all, I am currently planning on applying to podiatry school for the 2020-2021 and had a few questions that hopefully some of you could help clear up. I have been researching podiatry for sometime and did not have the opportunity to shadow one until very recently due to Covid. I am currently shadowing a Podiatrist and plan on shadowing 2 more in the near future. I really like the profession from what I have seen so far and I wish I looked into it sooner. I could see myself doing this throughout my professional career. A little bit of background of my situation. I applied for MD and DO schools back in 2018 and received 4 interviews (3 DO and 1 MD). I ultimately was placed on the waitlist for all of these schools and did not gain admissions. I am planning on applying to MD,DO, and DPM programs this summer.

My stats and activities are as follows (rough estimate):

3.75 cGPA, 3.6 sGPA---Graduated in 2016

1st MCAT: 499, 2nd MCAT: 505

ER Medical scribe for almost 3 years (about 2700 hours)

Family medicine, Orthopedic surgery, and EM shadowing (about 150 hours collectively)

Member of 2 clubs during college for 3 years

Worked for my family real estate company for the last 4 years (really low-scale)

Hospital volunteer for 1 year (about 100 hours)

Meals on Wheels (about 50 hours or so)

Podiatry shadowing (currently at 20 hours, hope to get to about 200 by application open)


In regards to applications I am not sure how similar are they to MD,DO applications. All I know about the application is that the 2020-2021 application cycle opens up on July 30th? In terms of personal statements how different should it be from my MD&DO personal statement, knowing that I would have to add ‘why podiatry’ in the statement. In terms of letters of recommendation, I already have letters for my medical school applications, could I use those or would I have to get new ones that endorse my candidacy for podiatry school? How many shadowing hours are good? Based on my rough estimate of my credentials do I have a good shot at podiatry school and how do you get scholarships for Podiatry school?


Lastly I have a few questions regarding podiatry profession as a whole. I am curious to know how podiatry is versus primary care(FM,IM, Peds) and EM, which is what I was initially interested in, in terms of ROI ,compensation, and overall lifestyle? Is it really hard to find good paying jobs as it has been mentioned time and time again in the SDN forums? The podiatrist who I am shadowing has told me the good jobs are not advertised well but they are out there in almost all locations and “Podiatry can be a gold mine because you are a surgeon and a physician and it all depends on how much you want to work and who you know.”


If any of you could provide insight for me regarding these questions I have, I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks all!
 

DexterMorganSK

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In regards to applications I am not sure how similar are they to MD,DO applications. All I know about the application is that the 2020-2021 application cycle opens up on July 30th? Yes, June 30th is when the current cycle closes

In terms of personal statements how different should it be from my MD&DO personal statement, knowing that I would have to add ‘why podiatry’ in the statement: add a part as to why you want to become a DPM, what made you choose this field; show them you are not only applying to this field because you can't get into an MD/DO program.

In terms of letters of recommendation, I already have letters for my medical school applications, could I use those or would I have to get new ones that endorse my candidacy for podiatry school? Yes, you can. Get another letter from a DPM, it will only strengthen your application.
How many shadowing hours are good? there isn't a specific number but anything above 10+ or I would say two shadowing visits to get the lor
Based on my rough estimate of my credentials do I have a good shot at podiatry school and how do you get scholarships for Podiatry school? You are fine for all the pod programs, apply in the first week, scholarships are based on competitive stats, and how early you are in the cycle.

Is it really hard to find good paying jobs as it has been mentioned time and time again in the SDN forums? it might be, I'm just a student. Talking with current-DPMs will help, rather than relying on SDN, but do search around here and read up on the salary.
 
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PTPuser

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Your stats are fine. You're probably gonna get scholarships too.

Obviously podiatry is different than all the specialties you've listed and even those guys are different than one another.

But the overarching factor here is that you'll be learning medicine and surgery in podiatry. It's the same medical model as the MD/DO, we just specialize from day 1. We're not taking the same boards but the principle is identical in terms of assessment, plan, treatment and evaluation.

You just gotta ask yourself if you're gonna be OK dealing with strictly foot and ankle.
 
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Great questions! You would be an excellent candidate for the DPM program with your high GPA and above average MCAT score (494 is average for podiatry matriculants).

Furthermore, if you applied early with those stats plus your extracurricular, volunteer, and shadowing experiences, you have a great chance of receiving a lofty scholarship. Some schools give up to $20,000 every year if you maintain a 3.5 GPA throughout their podiatric school program (only a few get this scholarship. Most are around $5,000). This would be a huge financial incentive.

At the same time, you are only about 5 points away (510+) from having a good shot at an allopathic school. This will definitely open doors to EM and orthopedic surgery. Personally, I wouldn't go DPM if you can get into an MD school and specialize in orthopedics.

DO still may be a good option if you are interested in becoming a GP or EM, but it will be incredibly difficult as a DO to get a spot in orthopedics (though not impossible). I would say DPM is a safe bet if you still want to do surgery and don't get your stats up to get accepted into an allopathic program.

I hope this was helpful. Good luck!
 
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I actually applied to DO schools before switching over to podiatry. I didn't change my personal statement as much since it was based more on why I wanted to do medicine in general. If your MD/DO statement mentioned OMM or specific specialty that doesn't apply to podiatry, I'd probably take it out and tweak it towards podiatry.

I agree with everyone that you have great stats and I'd apply early. It doesn't hurt to keep your options open and apply for all three programs, then decide after. Meanwhile, I'd continue to shadow different podiatrists - wound care, clinics, sports meds, surgeries etc to see if you really do enjoy the field.
 

Dochopeful13

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Hello all, I am currently planning on applying to podiatry school for the 2020-2021 and had a few questions that hopefully some of you could help clear up. I have been researching podiatry for sometime and did not have the opportunity to shadow one until very recently due to Covid. I am currently shadowing a Podiatrist and plan on shadowing 2 more in the near future. I really like the profession from what I have seen so far and I wish I looked into it sooner. I could see myself doing this throughout my professional career. A little bit of background of my situation. I applied for MD and DO schools back in 2018 and received 4 interviews (3 DO and 1 MD). I ultimately was placed on the waitlist for all of these schools and did not gain admissions. I am planning on applying to MD,DO, and DPM programs this summer.

My stats and activities are as follows (rough estimate):

3.75 cGPA, 3.6 sGPA---Graduated in 2016

1st MCAT: 499, 2nd MCAT: 505

ER Medical scribe for almost 3 years (about 2700 hours)

Family medicine, Orthopedic surgery, and EM shadowing (about 150 hours collectively)

Member of 2 clubs during college for 3 years

Worked for my family real estate company for the last 4 years (really low-scale)

Hospital volunteer for 1 year (about 100 hours)

Meals on Wheels (about 50 hours or so)

Podiatry shadowing (currently at 20 hours, hope to get to about 200 by application open)


In regards to applications I am not sure how similar are they to MD,DO applications. All I know about the application is that the 2020-2021 application cycle opens up on July 30th? In terms of personal statements how different should it be from my MD&DO personal statement, knowing that I would have to add ‘why podiatry’ in the statement. In terms of letters of recommendation, I already have letters for my medical school applications, could I use those or would I have to get new ones that endorse my candidacy for podiatry school? How many shadowing hours are good? Based on my rough estimate of my credentials do I have a good shot at podiatry school and how do you get scholarships for Podiatry school?


Lastly I have a few questions regarding podiatry profession as a whole. I am curious to know how podiatry is versus primary care(FM,IM, Peds) and EM, which is what I was initially interested in, in terms of ROI ,compensation, and overall lifestyle? Is it really hard to find good paying jobs as it has been mentioned time and time again in the SDN forums? The podiatrist who I am shadowing has told me the good jobs are not advertised well but they are out there in almost all locations and “Podiatry can be a gold mine because you are a surgeon and a physician and it all depends on how much you want to work and who you know.”


If any of you could provide insight for me regarding these questions I have, I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks all!
Not to derail the thread but how did you not get into DO with a great gpa and a 505 mcat? Did you apply broadly? Only do podiatry if you are really passionate about the field. Your stats will get you into DO which will open way more doors for u.
 

Autohasa

2+ Year Member
Oct 23, 2016
24
8
Not to derail the thread but how did you not get into DO with a great gpa and a 505 mcat? Did you apply broadly? Only do podiatry if you are really passionate about the field. Your stats will get you into DO which will open way more doors for u.
I applied to only 13 DO schools and my state medical school. So no I did not apply broadly for osteopathic schools. I did have interviews At 3 DO schools which I thought went good for the most part. But clearly they didn’t.
 

Autohasa

2+ Year Member
Oct 23, 2016
24
8
Great questions! You would be an excellent candidate for the DPM program with your high GPA and above average MCAT score (494 is average for podiatry matriculants).

Furthermore, if you applied early with those stats plus your extracurricular, volunteer, and shadowing experiences, you have a great chance of receiving a lofty scholarship. Some schools give up to $20,000 every year if you maintain a 3.5 GPA throughout their podiatric school program (only a few get this scholarship. Most are around $5,000). This would be a huge financial incentive.

At the same time, you are only about 5 points away (510+) from having a good shot at an allopathic school. This will definitely open doors to EM and orthopedic surgery. Personally, I wouldn't go DPM if you can get into an MD school and specialize in orthopedics.

DO still may be a good option if you are interested in becoming a GP or EM, but it will be incredibly difficult as a DO to get a spot in orthopedics (though not impossible). I would say DPM is a safe bet if you still want to do surgery and don't get your stats up to get accepted into an allopathic program.

I hope this was helpful. Good luck!
Thanks for the reply! I have been shadowing a podiatrist the past few weeks and really like the field. I am just hoping my stats are good enough to gain admission for the 2021 cycle. What is the competition like between the orthopedic foot an ankle surgeons and podiatrists? And what are your thoughts on podiatry vs family/internal medicine?
 

Autohasa

2+ Year Member
Oct 23, 2016
24
8
I actually applied to DO schools before switching over to podiatry. I didn't change my personal statement as much since it was based more on why I wanted to do medicine in general. If your MD/DO statement mentioned OMM or specific specialty that doesn't apply to podiatry, I'd probably take it out and tweak it towards podiatry.

I agree with everyone that you have great stats and I'd apply early. It doesn't hurt to keep your options open and apply for all three programs, then decide after. Meanwhile, I'd continue to shadow different podiatrists - wound care, clinics, sports meds, surgeries etc to see if you really do enjoy the field.
For my personal statement it is mostly geared towards medicine as a whole compared to a specific specialty. How podiatry centric should my personal statement be? Should it be one paragraph or more?
 

Autohasa

2+ Year Member
Oct 23, 2016
24
8
Thanks you for the detailed response, it really helped!
Just to clarify, I do not need to get different letters of recommendation for podiatry school and use the ones I used for my medical school application? I am getting one from the DPM I am shadowing now.
Does the podiatry application open a month before like medical school so you can fill it out before you submit or no?
I love the aspect of doing both primary and surgery with podiatry but I’m curious to know your opinion of podiatry vs primary care?
 

PTPuser

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Aug 11, 2018
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Thanks for the reply! I have been shadowing a podiatrist the past few weeks and really like the field. I am just hoping my stats are good enough to gain admission for the 2021 cycle. What is the competition like between the orthopedic foot an ankle surgeons and podiatrists? And what are your thoughts on podiatry vs family/internal medicine?
For my personal statement it is mostly geared towards medicine as a whole compared to a specific specialty. How podiatry centric should my personal statement be? Should it be one paragraph or more?

From my time shadowing pods who's department falls under orthopod (this place being a residency program) the relationship is cordial. There wasn't any "this is mine and that's yours , stay in your lane" attitude. The F/A orthopods were so chill and absolutely loved teaching both the pod residents and trauma fellows. Their collective goal was to make sure everyone who graduates are comfortable dealing with all the gamut of F/A procedures / surgery.

Re: Pod vs. FM/IM, you're not gonna be doing sliding scale insulin, CVD meds, wellness visits, and dabble into psych etc. Pods don't do it nor do I want to do that. PCP clinic makes me want to die. Obviously you'll need to understand the pathology and their relations but you're not going to be managing it.
 

Autohasa

2+ Year Member
Oct 23, 2016
24
8
From my time shadowing pods who's department falls under orthopod (this place being a residency program) the relationship is cordial. There wasn't any "this is mine and that's yours , stay in your lane" attitude. The F/A orthopods were so chill and absolutely loved teaching both the pod residents and trauma fellows. Their collective goal was to make sure everyone who graduates are comfortable dealing with all the gamut of F/A procedures / surgery.

Re: Pod vs. FM/IM, you're not gonna be doing sliding scale insulin, CVD meds, wellness visits, and dabble into psych etc. Pods don't do it nor do I want to do that. PCP clinic makes me want to die. Obviously you'll need to understand the pathology and their relations but you're not going to be managing it.
That is reassuring to know that it isn’t all hostile. Based on your shadowing experience at a residency program, would you recommend a fellowship?
 

PTPuser

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That is reassuring to know that it isn’t all hostile. Based on your shadowing experience at a residency program, would you recommend a fellowship?

I'm too far from that point in my education to speak on that. I will let someone else with more experience chime in on that.

But speaking directly with the pod PD at the residency program I shadowed, he said it was dependent on the person and their choice.
 

Dochopeful13

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Apr 3, 2013
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I'm too far from that point in my education to speak on that. I will let someone else with more experience chime in on that.

But speaking directly with the pod PD at the residency program I shadowed, he said it was dependent on the person and their choice.
Do you like the pod profession? Would you recommend it?
 

PTPuser

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Do you like the pod profession? Would you recommend it?

This is such a complex question that it's very difficult to answer. I am not at all far in the process to determine whether I can recommend it to anyone.

I wholeheartedly narrowed my focus only to myself and what I want out of my career / life, and see where podiatry fit into it. I was a career changer and worked in healthcare for almost a decade before I went back for SMP.

What any of us can tell you is why we picked it. Whether those reasons are right for you, and what the profession has to offer, that is something for you to determine whether or not it's worth it.

I wanted to be a doctor, practice medicine / surgery, and be a specialist in my own rights. I worked, shadowed and spoke to Podiatrist and saw that I liked the job given the situation that I was in. I imagined myself in it and went for it.

So we shall see if I'll be singing the same tune in a couple of years.
 

J29622

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That is reassuring to know that it isn’t all hostile. Based on your shadowing experience at a residency program, would you recommend a fellowship?

It depends on a number of factors. Ideally, you get the requisite training to be basically competent in all major facets of podiatric care, both surgical and non-surgical in your residency. Fellowships should serve to provide additional training in more niche elements, such as more involved and complex reconstructive procedures. These fellowships are typically well known and are often very competitive and usually go to the graduates of high powered programs.

There are then other scenarios where people use a fellowship to make up for inadequate training. These are not ideal and you should aim to do well in school so that you land a good program and don't feel like you need such training. There are also an assortment of poorly run / unnecessary fellowships that really provide little to no benefit to anyone. Those should of course be avoided.
 

Autohasa

2+ Year Member
Oct 23, 2016
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It depends on a number of factors. Ideally, you get the requisite training to be basically competent in all major facets of podiatric care, both surgical and non-surgical in your residency. Fellowships should serve to provide additional training in more niche elements, such as more involved and complex reconstructive procedures. These fellowships are typically well known and are often very competitive and usually go to the graduates of high powered programs.

There are then other scenarios where people use a fellowship to make up for inadequate training. These are not ideal and you should aim to do well in school so that you land a good program and don't feel like you need such training. There are also an assortment of poorly run / unnecessary fellowships that really provide little to no benefit to anyone. Those should of course be avoided.
Thanks for the clarification. In regards to fellowships such as sports medicine, trauma, or reconstructive fellowships, how do they help with training, exposure, and job placements in their particular niche and overall job placements?
 

J29622

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High quality fellowships can help in finding jobs, but it's not a guarantee. Additionally, you have to consider that you may not be able to find a market for the niche skills that you train in. Fellowships are something that can be helpful, but not always.
 
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Dear OP,

I am a second year DPM (podiatry) student and based off your resume, I think you have a really good chance of getting into Podiatry school. There are only 9 in the country. That being said I would definitely shadow a Podiatrist. Without it there really is no way you can tell if you want to pursue this career. Also, every school is going to want rec letter from a DPM. However, you can use the same rec letters for podiatry school. Just be ready to answer why you stopped pursuing medical school and why you are now pursuing podiatry.
Job wise, that depends on you. There are jobs out there, but not all are jobs are equally attractive. Median salary in Texas is around 180k. Also, the job is a 8-5 and you can truly run your own clinic.

I go to school at Western U. I have learned alot and not just about podiatry. Here at western we share curriculum with the DO school.

I hope I answered some of your questions!

Respectfully,
Asad
 

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